Co.Exist has a fascinating and very informative feature today all about how the iPad is transforming rural agriculture in some very poor farming regions. According to the article, whereas previously the fact that the iPad is an expensive device has kept it primarily in the developed world, this is now starting to change, with several companies seeing the wisdom of bringing the iPad to farmers in poorer parts of the world. The article looks in particular at two companies, Exprima Media, and coffee importer Sustainable Harvest, which have introduced the iPad to their coffee co-ops and farmers in East Africa, Mexico and South America.
According to Co.Exist, both companies have launched “efficiency and traceability” iPad apps in the past two years, for coffee farmers in developing countries. The two companies sell the iPads with the apps to coffee co-ops, rather than directly to the farmers, and the co-ops either buy the iPads directly with their own funds, or apply for grants from third parties. The Relationship Information Tracking System (RITS) app has more than two hours of training videos in various languages, and covers topics ranging from agronomy best practices to using coffee production waste to grow mushrooms. Co.Exist says that in 2011, a group of Tanzanian farmers used the app as a way to train other local farmers, managing to train 106 farmers in just one month.
Inspiring stuff indeed!“We went to Peru and introduced the RITS app to co-op employees,” Corey Pressman, president of Exprima Media told Co.Exist. “The president of the c-op got emotional and started talking about how he saw this as a way of engaging children and women to keep them in agriculture.”
Source: Can The iPad Revolutionize Rural Agriculture? | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation